December 6th, 2008
04:40 PM ET
5 years ago

Obama speechwriter Favreau learns the perils of Facebook

This photo of Favreau and Clinton appeared on Facebook Friday.
This photo of Favreau and Clinton appeared on Facebook Friday.

(CNN) - Jon Favreau, future White House director of speechwriting, has so far been at a loss for words over Facebook pictures of him at a recent party.

Pictures of Favreau, 27, at a recent party appeared on Facebook Friday. In one of the photos, Favreau, who served as President-elect Barack Obama’s chief speechwriter during the campaign season, was dancing with a life-sized cardboard cut-out of future secretary of state Hillary Clinton. In a second photo, a friend was offering the cutout a bottle of beer while Favreau stood beside the likeness with his hand on the cardboard New York senator’s chest.

The picture was reportedly up for a scant two hours or so before Favreau removed it, along with every other picture of himself beyond his profile photo - but there’s no getting the Facebook genie back in the bottle.

Favreau wasn’t talking to reporters about the incident, but transition officials said he had offered an apology to Clinton.

The Clinton camp reaction? "Sen. Clinton is pleased to learn of Jon's obvious interest in the State Department, and is currently reviewing his application," Clinton aide Philippe Reines told the Washington Post.


Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (717 Responses)
  1. Anne

    If thats her chest he has his hand on its in a weird place as it shoud be several inches to the side and lower.

    December 6, 2008 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  2. Obama's speechwriter is a sexist pig

    If this guy is on the white house staff come January 20th then Obama will lose a LOT of support among women and men. This is a tasteless vulgar insult to Hillary Clinton - and is indicative of the disrespect the Obama campaign threw at Senator Clinton during the campaign. DISGUSTING.

    Mr President elect – stand up and be a man and oss this jerk off your staff before you get some heat

    December 6, 2008 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  3. SHELLI

    What the hay! Hillary Clinton has said and done far worse than this young man and she is now slated for S.O.S. She and her husband Bill have played the Race card, made racial slurs and said that the Republican John McCain is a better suit for the Preisdents job than President-Elect Obama. SO what this young man did is nothing compared to the woman that lied and said that she had to duck and run to the car because of SNIPER FIRE! Get over this messy mess.

    December 6, 2008 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  4. Andrew

    Over rated. Granted it is a little over the top, i don't believe that it is the great evil thing many people have made it out to be. It was just some guys having a bear and a little fun!! An apology is all that is necessary, nothing more. And i am happy to see that Clinton hasn't become overly dramatic about a relatively unimportant event.

    December 6, 2008 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  5. Shawna Mills

    Big deal. I'm a woman, and I couldn't care less. Get over it – boys will be boys.

    December 6, 2008 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  6. Sylvia

    I'm sure there's some more deserving candidate that possesses more thoughtfulness, restraint and professionalism than this guy apparently has.

    December 6, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  7. Calypso

    I’ve been reading the excuse for Jon’s behavior is that he was drunk……how the hell does anyone know IF he was drunk and HOW drunk he was?? Excuses, lies, distortions, disrepect towards those who disagree…typical of Obama and his supporters.

    Those of us who have been taught to respect others simply would NOT whether sober or drunk , engage in such demeaning sexist behavior.

    The woman in the background is smiling her approval. What would the Obama team response have been if it had been a cutout of Michelle O.??

    December 6, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  8. Anne

    I am so sick of women and their fake outrage. As a woman I find it amusing. .

    December 6, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  9. hhusmcret

    This is a perfect representation of how Obama got elected. Favreau is representative of the demographic that the Obama camp pursued throughout the campaign. If you subtracted votes received from the immature, un-knowing, politically ignorant, facebook/youtube using youth in our society, McCain wins. Period.

    December 6, 2008 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  10. Obama is tarnished

    If this guy is on the white house staff come January 20th then Obama will lose a LOT of support among women and men. This is a tasteless vulgar insult to Hillary Clinton - and is indicative of the disrespect the Obama campaign threw at Senator Clinton during the campaign. DISGUSTING.

    Mr President elect – stand up and be a man and oss this jerk off your staff before you get some heat

    December 6, 2008 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  11. julie

    It was just in fun. Do any of you old people ever remember being young? Do you remember doing anything perhaps a little stupid in hindsight....stop being so critical of absolutely everything. If Hillary is ok with it, then why gripe. We have much bigger problems in our world than just guys being guys behind the scenes! Don't act like none of you men ever spoke or gestured women as being sex symbols. And any of you women that think your man hasn't in their entire lives....you are in denial. Much bigger issues.....

    December 6, 2008 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  12. Rahf in San Angelo

    I think we need to take a moment away from the judgmental norm. Cameras are everywhere. The young man is obviously intoxicated and this lapse in judgment clearly has no bearing or his ability as a speechwriter. People often find it easy to stand high and look low.

    December 6, 2008 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  13. John S.

    Yes, Jon is 27 years old, there's a lot of young people in politics, especially in the Obama campaign. If he isn't a smart, mature, dependable, and a dang good speech writer then he wouldn't be on the President-Elect's team.

    The guy had a little fun at a party and acted foolishly did things he normally wouldn't do, the same thing that happens to everyone else once intoxicated. To call for his head over this is completely unnecessary.

    He knows he's done something wrong, and(according to this article) figured it out and promptly removed them. He's apologized, the Clinton 's entourage obviously sees it as a gaff, he's most likely been reprimanded, and he's still in line for the job, so move on.

    December 6, 2008 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  14. Zane

    Everyone who's calling this sexism just shut up. This was a picture taken by a few young guys who were probably pretty drunk at some party. Sure, you could say this is "objectifying women" or sexist, but you could also say this is a young guy that was just having some fun. I would bet that 99% of all men (or, at least, male politicians) have done or said something (probably many somethings) that could be construed as sexist. I'm a big Obama supporter, but I have no doubt that at some point in his life (perhaps around the same age as Favreau) he has said or done something which, if all of you knew, would be overblown and called sexist. People have been making "sexist" jokes and remarks since the dawn of humanity, and sexuality has been around much longer than that. I find it completely understandable that something like this has happened, does happen, and will continue to happen. Do you think that because he appeared in a picture apparently groping Hillary Clinton, he's actually going to do that if he gets the chance? Or maybe, he'll write a sexist joke into one of Obama's speeches? OF COURSE NOT! I'd be willing to bet you that every member of Obama's administration, male or female, black or white, Latino or Asian, gay or straight, or anything else, has at some point made a joke or remark that could be construed as sexist, racist, homophobic, heterophobic, or something else entirely, and yet, despite that, is never going to make any action that reflects those remarks. I am honestly really getting tired of this ultra-liberal, hardcore political correctionist attitude, and I'm extremely liberal. I believe in being politically correct, obviously, but to say that because a 27-year-old, probably not far out of college, is going to do something politically stupid because he appears in a photograph doing something "sexist" is just wrong, and when it comes to things like this, everyone needs to just shut up.

    December 6, 2008 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  15. gb

    If a 27 year old is going to have that much responsibility and want's a leadership role in the state department he should be held accountable for this unappropriate behavior. This type of behavior would not be condoned in any corporate work place in america. dismissing it as good old fun only undermines this kind of respect in the work place that all serious corporations have been promoting through ethics programs. What is shocking also is that this guy posted the picture on facebook himself in his own profile.

    December 6, 2008 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  16. rafael

    Peoples when hillary was campaning in puerto rico
    they showed a picture of her driking beer,so what is the problem
    with this picture??? nothing at all it!s only a photo peoples only a photo
    so maybe he likes hillary so much that he wanted to have a photo with her chill peoples chill.

    December 6, 2008 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  17. Sarah from Texas

    While it's disrespectful, it's really nothing to lose a job over or ruin a career

    December 6, 2008 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  18. Tynan

    There isn't a man, woman, of any color, creed, nationality, or age that doesn't engage in stupid behavior from time to time. We must stop focusing too much on the necessary "sainthood" of public figures, and instead concentrate on the substance of their distinction which has propelled them to such high positions. To quote Saint Augustine (in his youth), "Grant me chastity and continence, but not yet."

    December 6, 2008 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  19. Frank

    I'm going with Jane on this one....not a big deal.

    December 6, 2008 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  20. John

    Clintons response was just perfect.

    December 6, 2008 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  21. Jeff

    You people are prudes. Who cares, he's 27.

    December 6, 2008 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  22. Team Bovine

    Anybody remember Ham Jordon and the "pyramids" of Egypt? Ahhh, those were the days; so glad they are back after 8 years of real buffoons!

    December 6, 2008 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  23. Jody Monroe

    It's a good thing that the Obama campaign believes in complete transparency with government officials and employees...

    Is this a college prank or what? Grow up!

    December 6, 2008 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  24. Bill

    This is what is going into the White House? And why not report on how many companies are taking the bailout money and paying multi-million dollar bonuses to their executives while they ship more jobs overseas? After all the party going into the White House made it happen.

    December 6, 2008 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  25. Larry

    This will be very interesting to read the post on this blog,some will make a big deal out of it,many will go into total denial,saying it's no big deal.The people that will take one stance here, would reverse their thinking in a heart beat if the subject were the opposite party.The only thing we all have in common is we all have an opinion we want to post.

    December 6, 2008 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
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